NEW MUSIC: Unwed Sailor – Ovid

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Math-rock, post-rock, call it what you will… The 90s and 00s were a goldmine for this kind of music. Knotty guitars wrestling and dancing in weird shapes, time signatures playing hopscotch and for the most part no vocals. From Slint, Pan Am and Tortoise through to Isis and Pelican the range of sonic detail and emotional outpouring and impact ran the gamut of intensity.

Unwed Sailor, from Tulsa, OK have been at it for a long time, particularly main man Johnathon Ford, a one-time member of Pedro the Lion and Roadside Monument. It’s been 11 years since their last album but they’re back with Heavy Age and this first taste of it, ‘Ovid’, digs into some wonderful guitar lines. Part shoegaze, part post-rock, you can hear similarities with a bunch of English bands including Swervedriver and Ride yet the lack of vocals means the focus is even more tightly fixed on the landscape painted by the guitars and their effects pedals as well as the gloriously contorting rhythm section.

Heavy Age is set for release on May 3rd.

NEW MUSIC: Tindersticks Soundtrack ‘High Life’

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Tindersticks and Stuart A. Staples are custom built for soundtrack work, such is their ability to conjure such exquisite and restrained mood and atmosphere, both musically and vocally. They’ve worked on a number of film projects in the past and this latest one by Staples is for the movie High Life, directed by Claire Denis – who Staples has worked with on seven of her other films. His soundtrack and sound design compositions on High Life earned him the George Delerue Award for Best Music at the Gent Film Festival.

Below you can watch the video for ‘Willow’, with lead vocal from actor Robert Pattinson, and listen to the instrumental piece ‘The Garden’ which rises and falls with dramatic tension and poise, a brooding cousin to late period Talk Talk experimentations with its droning bed and searching brass.

Most of the music for High Life was made before the filming. The conversation with Claire started maybe as far back as 2012. There were many ideas I wanted to explore and I appreciated the foresight of Claire and the producers in offering me support and encouragement to do this. As well as work with usual collaborators Dan McKinna, Neil Fraser and Earl Harvin, this afforded me purely experimental recording sessions with David Coulter, Thomas Bloch, David Okumu, Julian Siegel, Seb Rochford and the BBC singers. Several long sketches / pieces were created from these sessions that the eventual score was formed from or informed by. 

And then there was ‘Willow’. a seed of a song shared by myself and Dan Mckinna that eventually grew to be the conclusion of the High life with Robert Pattinson, the lead actor, singing the song in character to his daughter Willow, a theme that runs through the film.

~ Stuart A. Staples

 

NEW MUSIC: Jackmann – The Wolf & The Hare

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Jackmann is the stage name of Kris Schroeder of The Basics and ‘The Wolf & The Hare’ is the first single from his forthcoming LP Low Key.

He mentions Warren Zevon as an influence and was one of the first reference points that came to mind on this track. That backbeat, the clipped chop of the rhythm and the vocal sound all combine to produce a great 70s sound, with some magical guitar playing. There’s a certain toughness to the sound that works well as the piano hammers out notes like a wired and poetically belligerent barfly. Great production courtesy of Sam Okell at Abbey Road Studios too.

According to Jackmann, “The song is both a plea of innocence and an admission of guilt, an exploration of mental health, power, predator and prey in the new world of internet relationships, emotional manipulation and sugar daddies. “I am not a criminal, I’m just as much a victim as her…” “Who is the Wolf? Who is the Hare?”

NEW MUSIC: Kerchief – Til The End

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A sultry slice of indie pop/rock this afternoon from American trio Kerchief. They’ve just released their debut album Fluke and ‘Til The End’ is a great example of the way they subtly approach shimmering and sparkling guitars, softly unfurling melodies and a danceable element that gets under the skin. We’re hearing Jen Cloher and Placebo as possible influences on their sound.

NEW MUSIC: Bollard – TSINA

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‘TSINA’ has an unsettling start, it feels off kilter and slightly disorientating. Then things fall into place as guitars drench the song in warm and fuzzy distortion. There’s a really nice blend of styles going on in Bollard’s music. Part, jangly rock, part post-rock and post-punk deconstruction and the verve and carefree noise of 90s rock pioneered by bands like Swervedriver and Sonic Youth.

The song follows their 2018 LP Trawlers and is set to appear on a new forthcoming EP.

Gathered round the soft light of the screen,

Talk until words such as these,

Leave no mark on the places they have gone,

In the darkness there remains a light on,

In a downtown apartment, in the coolest of scenes, where each morning they tell you what they saw in their dreams.

And all around you thoughts are endless, just as you speak they leave. Til it all just crumbles away

I’ll tell you something – they don’t know what it’s like. Come to think nor do I!

I answer your strange fascination for where the virtue goes with a smile for I don’t know.

Our desires they are twisted and they unwind in the breeze. It’s all just plastic you can shape it as you please.

Whenever I come round and no-ones there,

I wonder ‘why did evan dando cut his hair’?

In a downtown apartment, in the coolest of scenes, where each day is a reminder of what you could have been.

And it hangs around your neck, and in the doorways and in the things they just won’t say.

I’ll tell you something – they don’t know what it’s like. Come to think nor do I!

I answer your strange fascination for where the virtue goes with a smile for I don’t know.

And I’m looking out the curtain as I star across, they’ll never know. From the garden I peer into their vacant home.

A crowd is gathering up this road. It is nothing, it is nothing, it is just and empty sack of blood and bones.

NEW MUSIC: FortEver – Hwy 62

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Shoegaze guitars that recall Smashing Pumpkins’ Gish, dubbed out hypnotic drums, psych-folk acoustic guitar, MBV trippy effects. There’s a whole bunch of stuff going on in this instrumental track from a Californian act that we know very little about other than it is the project of Scott Fairbrother who has had music placed in a few TV shows and games such as Grand Theft Auto. It’s entrancing stuff – melodic and meditative at the same time.

NEW MUSIC: Baroness – Borderlines

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Baroness have announced their new album Gold & Grey will be released on on June 14 via Abraxan Hymns/Cooking Vinyl Australia.

“Our goal is, was, and will always be to write increasingly superior, more honest and compelling songs, and to develop a more unique and challenging sound,” offered Baroness founder, guitar player and vocalist John Baizley. “I’m sure we have just finished our best, most adventurous album to date. We dug incredibly deep, challenged ourselves and recorded a record I’m positive we could never again replicate. I consider myself incredibly fortunate to know Sebastian, Nick and Gina as both my bandmates and my friends. They have pushed me to become a better songwriter, musician and vocalist. We’re all extremely excited for this release, which includes quite a few ‘firsts’ for the band, and we’re thrilled to be back on tour to play these psychotic songs for our fans. Expect some surprises.”

Baroness is John Baizley (vocals/guitar), Gina Gleason (guitar), Nick Jost (bass) and Sebastian Thomson (drums).

1. Front Toward Enemy
2. I’m Already Gone
3. Seasons
4. Sevens
5. Tourniquet
6. Anchor’s Lament
7. Throw Me An Anchor
8. I’d Do Anything
9. Blankets of Ash
10. Emmett-Radiating Light
11. Cold Blooded Angels
12. Crooked Mile
13. Broken Halo
14. Can Oscura
15. Borderlines
16. Assault on East Falls
17. Pale Sun

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NEWS: King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard announce new LP ‘Fishing For Fishies’

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After their massive five album onslaught of 2017, the band played some massive shows and tours through last year before consolidating and recording their new LP Fishing For Fishies which is set for release on April 26th via their label Flightless Records.

They’re calling this 14th album a blues-infused blast of sonic boogie. “We tried to make a blues record,” says frontman Stu Mackenzie. “A blues-boogie-shuffle-kinda-thing, but the songs kept fighting it – or maybe it was us fighting them. Ultimately though we let the songs guide us this time; we let them have their own personalities and forge their own path. Paths of light, paths of darkness. This is a collection of songs that went on wild journeys of transformation.”

We’ve already heard the synth epic Cyboogie, here’s the title track from the record…